Callahan, Daniel(1930– ) philosopher, medical ethicist; born in Washington, D.C. After graduating from Yale (1952), he went on to take an M.A. from Georgetown and a Ph.D. in philosophy from Harvard (1965). He served as executive editor of Commonweal (1961–68) and then was an associate at the Population Council in New York City (1969–70). Drawing on his experiences there and his formal training in philosophy, in 1969 he cofounded and directed the Institute for Social Ethics and the Life Sciences at the Hastings Center (Briarcliff Manor, N.Y.), a research and educational organization dedicated to examining ethical issues of medicine, biology, and the professions. His particular concerns are reflected in the title of the over 30 books he has written or edited, including Ethics in Hard Times (1982), Setting Limits: Medical Goals in an Aging Society (1987), and Abortion: Understanding Differences (with his wife, Sidney Callahan, 1984). His prominence and authority made him one of the most interviewed and quoted individuals on such controversial topics and have gained him membership in the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences, as well as membership on the Task Force on Life and Law of New York State and the Advisory Council of the Office of Scientific Integrity, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. He was a guest professor at numerous universities and a consultant to various governmental and private committees dealing with his areas of expertise.
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.